Resident Alien Turns Woman's Pelvic Exam into Sitcom Joke

We already wrote about how Resident Alien, the TV show, is an odd hodge-podge of tones and tropes that doesn't really know what it really is. It's a complete opposite in tone and creative choices from the original comic book. Where the comic is subtle, the show is crass. Where the comic is smart, the show is stupid. We didn't expect that the show would double down on this in the second episode and probably continue for the rest of the season.

Resident Alien Turns Woman's Pelvic Exam into Sitcom Joke
RESIDENT ALIEN — "Homesick" Episode 102 — Pictured: Alien Harry — (Photo by: James Dittinger/SYFY)

In the opening of the second episode, Harry (Alan Tudyk), the space alien in disguise, starts his first day as the new town doctor. He gloats that he's a superior being who can figure out medical science just by searching the internet on his smartphone for 5 minutes. Then he's presented with a woman who's there for a pelvic exam. He hadn't looked up gynecology yet, so while his head is under the covers between her legs, he starts searching how to conduct a pelvic exam on his phone. He accidentally clicks the camera button, and the woman sees the flash and hears the camera sound effect go off. She asks if he just took a picture of her crotch. He tells her he was merely taking a selfie and proceeds to take a selfie with her, where she grinningly obliges.

This scene and the rest of the show seems to follow sitcom logic where Harry goes around acting and saying the most insane and awful things, and everyone in town just looks at him funny for a second, then shrugs and goes about their lives. In real life, Harry would have been arrested for sexual assault, but this is TV, and the writers of this show seem to be writing with contempt for their audience. They write like they're Harry – with an utter lack of actual life experience beyond what they learned from watching TV. Nobody on this show acts like anyone in real life would. Every single character acts like a character from another TV show we've seen before.

Resident Alien: Is This for Real?

This scene is an example of "sitcom logic" applied to a situation that might be considered sexual assault in the real world. Yet everyone in this show just laughed it off. Could Resident Alien be secretly addressing a real problem that's rampant in society right now, or are we giving some lazy TV writers way too much credit? Maybe the show is really an allegory for white privilege – Harry can get away with the most awful behaviour just because he looks like a white American man. Pop culture is a product of its time. They always express what's going on whether the creators meant to or not, and Resident Alien might be a brilliant example of this.

At first glance, it might look like Mork and Mindy written by psychopaths. What if it's really an allegory for the Trump era that just ended after four years: it's the story of a murderous idiot alien who can't even act like a functional human being in society, and everyone just lets him get away with his awful behaviour. Hats off to this show's writers for the purest expression of the last four years in what looks like a dumb sitcom Science Fiction show. And all in the first two episodes! That's a record! The SyFy Channel is still making innovative TV, possibly by accident!

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About Adi Tantimedh

Adi Tantimedh is a filmmaker, screenwriter and novelist who just likes to writer. He wrote radio plays for the BBC Radio, “JLA: Age of Wonder” for DC Comics, “Blackshirt” for Moonstone Books, and “La Muse” for Big Head Press. Most recently, he wrote “Her Nightly Embrace”, “Her Beautiful Monster” and “Her Fugitive Heart”, a trilogy of novels featuring a British-Indian private eye published by Atria Books, a division Simon & Schuster.
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